PRICES: Inflation in the Raw

The people at the Stop & Shop supermarket chain felt that an explanation was necessary. So at each of their 158 stores in the Northeast, managers posted a sign:

IN SPITE OF ALL WE'RE DOING TO KEEP FOOD PRICES DOWN, CERTAIN PRICE INCREASES YOU SEE IN FOOD STORES ARE INEVITABLE. IT'S SIMPLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR FOOD STORES TO ABSORB REPEATED WHOLESALE COST INCREASES FROM THE MANUFACTURERS WITHOUT REFLECTING SOME PART OF THESE INCREASES IN RETAIL PRICES.

Those discouraging words stand to acquire even more validity in the months ahead. Bureau of Labor Statistics figures for wholesale food prices,...

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